When we went to the Château of Chantilly, our visit coincided with the Journée des Plantes, which is French for The Day of Plants – and it’s basically the place to inspire you with ideas for your garden. I couldn’t write about our weekend in Chantilly without talking about this event.
It was … magical.
From the Côté Maison magazine, I gather that there are three famous Journée des Plantes (or something similar) per year: in Chantilly, Courson, and Beauregard.
In Chantilly, the grounds outside the château were packed with all sorts of vendors, from the unknown
to the more famous, such as Truffaut and David Austin roses.
This is the place where you’ll find the more exotic plants
as well as everything you need to care for your garden.
Matthieu and I were seduced by this little greenhouse that has a tiny gutter and a weather vane on top. He studied how it was made, and plans to try and reproduce it. We already know where it’s going to go, and it will look charming.
Otherwise, there are tons of garden decorating ideas. Fountains –
(Very French these ones made of copper).
And iron garden decorations. Who needs dwarves?
wooden garden decorations
places to sit
and places to eat
And then, of course, actual food! There were the cute little baristas on wheels. Oops no. The barista is on feet. The cute little coffee truck is on wheels.
and fresh honey to take home (or do I want to keep a beehive?)
even a row of exotic spices!
And then these … not food. Yet.
Truly, I’ve never seen more unusual birds outside of the zoo.
The setting was incredible, right on the château grounds (along with the sheep)
with stands nestled in the trees, on the paths, and in the fields.
You even have the French gardeners (with garden boots and corduroys standing on bales of hay).
See? Everyone else was getting inspired too!
We weren’t prepared for this. If we had been, we might have measured our garden and determined which trees and perennials and decorations were must-haves for our tiny little plot of earth.
Perhaps it was best we did not. As it was, we came home with this:
Dried hydrangea blossoms that I placed in a white water pitcher, and which are meant to last a year.
And then, of course, we came home with dinosaur grass. It’s similar to bamboo (also in the fact that it’s invasive, so you need to plant it in a contained area). But it turns fluorescent in the light, resists climate changes, and was around when the dinosaurs roamed the earth! The kids are enchanted.
It will go in a rectangular box to line our terrace in the form of a green hedge.
So that’s it. I still need to share what to see in Chantilly, and I’ll do that after my recipe post later this week. And in case you missed my ‘where to stay and where to eat in Chantilly’ post, you can find that information here.
But these French garden decorating ideas deserved a post all of their own. If you dream of turning your garden into a sanctuary (and wonder where to start), I hope you’ll be inspired in the same way we were. At the very least you get lots of photos of all things French. 😉